LOS ANGELES, CA.- Over the Influence
announced the acceptance of works by Nydia Blas and Devin Troy Strother into the permanent collection of the California African American Museum (CAAM). Each individual will have two artworks join the museums collection- Blas photographs Way Up and Whatever You Like, both from 2017, and Strothers sculptures downward thoughts of colour, 2020 and guuuuurl you know i love me some yves kleins to, 2013.
Nydia Blas (b. 1981) is a visual artist whose work focuses on womanhood, self identity, and race politics. Her highly acclaimed photo series The Girls Who Spun Gold is a collection of images of young black women from a Girl Empowerment Group the artist founded in Ithaca, New York. Blass work was featured in The New York Times Magazine with her portrait of 2018 Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith and in the Mfon: A Journal of Women Photographers of the African Diaspora. She has completed artist residencies at Constance Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts, Ithaca, NY, USA and The Center for Photography at Woodstock, Woodstock, NY, USA. She has exhibited at The George Washington Carver Museum, Austin, TX, USA and the Constance Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts, Ithaca, NY, USA. She is the recipient of the 2018 Light Work Grant.
Devin Troy Strother (b. 1986) is a mixed media artist whose work ranges from paintings, collage, and sculpture. The artists body of works are punctuated with subversive messages and a dark sense of humour. His collages reference Henri Matisse and Marcel Duchamp. Strother has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the US and abroad including at V1 Gallery, Copenhagen, Denmark, Marlborough Contemporary, New York, NUY, USA, Torrance Art Museum, Torrance, CA, USA, Harlem Studio Museum, New York, NY, USA, and the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, CA, USA. His works are in the permanent collections of The Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Santa Barbara Museum of Art, and the Studio Museum in Harlem, as well as in prominent private collections worldwide.
Over the Influence was founded in Hong Kong in 2015 and expanded to Los Angeles in 2018. The gallery represents an international roster of emerging and established artists working across different mediums and disciplines. OTI is dedicated to championing artists who challenge traditional approaches to studio practice and presents a dynamic program that explores the intersection of contemporary art, architecture, design, music, fashion and other forms of visual expression.
CAAM was first opened in 1981 in temporary quarters, and soon moved in 1984 to its permanent home in Exposition Park in downtown Los Angeles. The institution dedicates its knowledge and resources to preserving, collecting, researching, and archiving the visual history and heritage of African Americans, spanning from African art to 19th century artworks. The permanent collection includes photography, paintings, installation works, as well as an extensive library consisting of more than 20,000 titles.